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tv   Journal  PBS  November 8, 2011 6:00pm-6:30pm PST

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>> hello and welcome to "the internal." and -- >"the journal." silvio berlusconi says he will step down once he gets his austerity package to parliament. across party lines, and greek strike to find a new prime minister. and european leaders open a new gas pipeline, leaking germany and russia. -- linking germany and russia. captioned by the national captioning institute --www.ncicap.org-- >> italian prime minister silvio berlusconi has announced he will step down after 17 years at the top of political life in his
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country. he leaves as italy faces a debt crisis that is forcing cutbacks in all sectors. his resignation comes after opposition lawmakers abstained from voting on what would have been a routine measure, the approval of the budget. the plan was not supported by conservative coalition partners, handing him a humiliating defeat. >> only 308 mps in the lower house of parliament voted to ratify the report on the country's finances for 2010. after the result was announced, the opposition urged berlusconi to resign. >> this result clearly shows the government no longer has a majority in parliament. >> leftist opposition parties and defectors from the center- right coalition boycotted the vote. as a result, berlusconi lost his
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majority. under increasing pressure to step down, the prime minister met with close advisers. his top ally, umberto bossi of the northern league, said he was no longer willing to back him. a reporter questioned umberto bossi. the northern league party member said he had asked the prime minister to step down, but did not expect it would happen tuesday. following the vote, berlusconi held a crisis meeting. he had managed to hang on to power many times before, but this time says he will step down when parliament passes the next austerity measures, expected this week. >> the opposition is saying italy risks losing access to financial markets as a result of the political uncertainty in the country. we are joined by a correspondent in rome. is this the end of silvio berlusconi's political career? he has been quite a survivor until now. >> it does look like it,
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although i would not exclusive -- exclude a last-minute surprise. berlusconi is skillful politically and does not always follow tomorrow what he says he will do today. he has his back to the wall. after tonight's meeting with the italian president, there was a joint communique from the palace which is the official residence of the head of state. it will be difficult for mr. berlusconi to go back on that decision now. his resignation could come next week, when austerity measures and measures to stimulate economic growth are due to come before parliament for another vote. it could be within a relatively short time that we shall have negotiations beginning for a new government. >> berlusconi says he will stay on until the pushes the austerity package through parliament. can he do that now?
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>> it is doubtful. i think the pressure on italy will continue to grow over coming days. already, the latest quotations on italian bonds show the spread, in comparison with german bonds, continues to climb. italians are soon going to have to pay through the nose, as it were, to service their mountain of debt. and political uncertainty is just what the market does not need. as long as there is no clear road forward, speculators are going to have a field day. italy risks finding itself in a difficult position within a short time. the problem is that finding a new government in rome normally takes a long time, weeks and even months, according to past experience. italy does not have time. time is of the essence.
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inspectors from the international monetary fund and european union have already arrived and will begin work tomorrow, monitoring what the italian government is doing. in a time of uncertainty like the present, the answer is the government is not doing much. >> thanks for that from rome. along with all the uncertainty in italy, greece remains without the government. power-sharing talks between the outgoing prime minister and the opposition leader of continuing, with senior officials saying a deal is close. they have agreed to forge an interim government that will shepherd through the you-imf austerity plan. >> many hope a new prime minister will soon be named. from outgoing prime minister papandreou to others, politicians are running from meeting to meeting to pave the way for a new national unity
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government. >> it is my feeling that tonight we will have a name. >> the tourism minister is not worried about things moving too slowly. >> i have the opposite feeling that everything is going well. things are going to be fulfilled soon. we will start working in the next days with stronger momentum. >> an independent candidate and foreman european central bank vice president, papademos, is said to have agreed to lead. that news is sparking optimism in greece. >> there is sincerity and responsibility in the relationships between the parties. the result will be good for the people, the party, and the european union. >> leaders of the political parties are still negotiating final details. time is the biggest factor, such as how long the transitional
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government will have to implement reforms demanded by the you. >> are the greeks closer to getting a new prime minister? i put that question to our correspondent in athens. >> i wish i had a straightforward answer for you. unfortunately, i do not. the prime minister earlier said he wanted to patch things up by this evening and wanted to have a newly formed government, or at least name the person who would have this cabinet. so far, we have nothing coming out yet. we do not really know why it is taking so long, other than the are trying to form a government that will most likely be composed of people who are not necessarily from within the usual political suspects. they are trying to come up with technocrats and people who will also be, if you like, approved
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by both the ruling party but also the main opposition party, the conservative new democracy. >> thanks for that from athens. in his long-awaited report, the international atomic energy agency has accused iran of conducting experiments to create nuclear weapons. iran has rejected the report as unbalanced, unprofessional, and politically motivated. israel says it backs up its claims that tehran is a danger to national security. netanyahu has warned he might launch nuclear strikes against iran if necessary. >> israeli antiwar activists strongly oppose air strikes against iran, but recent surveys show israelis split over whether action should be taken. tehran has expanded uranium enrichment. a few months ago, it opened a
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new plant. the iranian government claims the nuclear program is solely to generate power for civilian purposes. the report by the international atomic energy agency says it has serious concerns about iran's nuclear program. the u.n. agency has obtained information that tehran may be developing nuclear weapons and carrying out experiments with nuclear explosives. europe is opposed to such a program. >> if the situation continues to escalate and the report confirms that iran is once again working on nuclear weapons, there is no doubt that we here in europe will prepare fresh sanctions. >> we are very worried about iran arm itself with nuclear weapons, and there are some indications that is the case, but everything has to be done to prevent military action. >> israel is considering options for countering iran.
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israel has used air strikes twice in the past to destroy nuclear facilities in iraq and syria. a strike this time could provoke a wider regional war. >> could the world see its first tobin tax on transactions? >> this has a lot of strong supporters. but unless everybody introduces it, nobody will. as governments continue to search for revenue to battle crises, european finance ministers have fallen out over a proposal to implement a financial transaction tax. france and germany have tried to win support for the tax in recent months, with nicolas sarkozy describing it as technically possible, financially necessary, and morally unavoidable. he says the tax could be implemented as soon as 2012. but european economies outside of the eurozone have reiterated their strong stand against it.
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>> at the moment, there is no levy against share trading and currency derivatives transactions. many european finance ministers want that to change. the european commission says a financial transaction tax would generate revenues of 55 billion euros a year. germany, belgium, and austria are in favor. >> introducing this tax would send a signal to the markets. >> but there is strong opposition from britain and sweden. >> i think it is a nonstarter. it is a very efficient way of growth, and it will increase the borrowing costs for indebted countries. >> if the you finance ministers are also working on the fine print -- the eu finance ministers are working on the fine print. countries are struggling to reduce debt. ministers are pushing for a
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swift solution. >> the eurozone needs to show the world it can stand behind its currency and at work on developments in athens and rome. we also have to make progress in brussels. >> progress has been slow, and investors are waiting for a solution to calm the volatile markets. >> fresh data shows that germany may be able to power through a looming slowdown. exports, the traditional engine of the german economy, hit a record high in september, up almost a full percent, to a total of 91.3 billion euros. analysts were surprised, with other indicators pointing to a slowdown. industrial production and manufacturing orders fell in september, and the survey of business confidence was down as well. european shares managed to snap their recent losing streak and locked in solid gains tuesday. u.s. shares have also rallied at
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the news of silvio berlusconi's pending resignation. germany's dax finished up more than half a percent. the dow jones up even higher. blue chips have rebounded from earlier losses now that berlusconi has agreed to resign. the dow up by 0.6%. on currency markets, the euro rallying, up to $1.3829. western europe can look forward to a warmer winter than years gone by, now that a direct link has been established to russia's national gas reserves. the strategic pipeline runs directly from russia to germany, along the bottom of the baltic sea, circumventing ukraine, which closed of pipelines in the past amid disputes with russia. nordstream took a seven years to
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build at a cost of 7 billion euros. there was celebration by angela merkle and dmitry medvedev. >> it is truly international. the pipeline is owned by gazprom, two german energy companies, and one from france and the netherlands. this bypasses routes through ukraine, belarus, and poland, which have been disrupted in recent years. the pipeline runs about 500 kilometers, from a russian town near st. petersburg to a town on germany's baltic coast. chancellor merkle said the pipeline offers substantial advantages for energy consumers in western europe. >> we seek a sensible approach to development across our continent and will be closely interconnected for decades to come.
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>> the capacity of the pipeline will double to more than 50 million cubic meters when a second line is completed, scheduled next year. it will eventually provide enough national gas to heat 26 million homes every year. >> the boxing left anfrazier hat the age of 67. he became the first boxer to be mohammad ali in what became known as "the fight of the century." >> smoking joe frazier fought his way to boxing immortality by the best thing mohammad ali in one of their three epiphytes. he was going in south carolina, the youngest of 12 children. he had to claw his way to the top. his first big victory came when he took gold at the tokyo olympics in 1964. after turning pro, he quickly made a name for himself as a
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relentless slugger. he was heavyweight champion of the world from 1970 to 1973. he lost for professional bouts, twice to ali and twice to george foreman. he had a short-lived detour into show business. boxing legend joe frazier died in philadelphia on monday, just months after being diagnosed with liver cancer. >> the largest ever exhibit of works by leonardo da vinci is set to be unveiled in london's national gallery. nine oil paintings and 50 drawings will be on display, including a painting which was recently authenticated as being one of the vinci's works. there will be -- the exhibit has been insured for 1.6 million euros.
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>> thanks for staying with us. while the debt crisis is forcing emergency austerity measures, germany has remained largely unscathed, thanks to its industrial exports, and radical spending cuts over the last decade. among them, a deeper reduction in military forces. conscription was effectively ended earlier this year, and this week the defense minister announced the closure of 31 basis. the country is building up a professional army to replace a military of citizens in uniform, the result of a change in strategic thinking that foresees future threats coming from small regional conflicts, not world wars. finding enough volunteers for the new army is proving to be a challenge.
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>> first, they apply for fuel deployment. camouflage it is important when the enemy is close at hand. just for training purposes. the imaginary front stretches the length of the training ground near the eastern german town. this man is being trained as a radio operator. the record has been in the army four weeks. his trainer is a master sergeant. the 36-year-old has been in the army for 14 years. one is an experienced soldier come up with expectations. the other is new. >> i am eager to do something for my country, so i said either i will join the police force or the army. but i was more interested in the army. i had also heard a lot of stories from my relatives about what it is like here. in the and, i decided to join
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the army. >> since ending conscription this year, german armed forces are eager to attract people like this. in the old days, they could choose the best soldiers from among a large group of conscripts. now, the army has to convince people to join up in the first place. it is not easy, although the requirements are hardly stringent. >> common sense, a good education, and an interest in a career as a professional soldier. if they have these criteria, it is a green light. >> are you getting that at the moment? >> maybe not 100%, but 80%. >> during the break, don't just think about having a cigarette or a drink. think about your camouflage. that is your life insurance. >> many fear the only people who will join the army are those who cannot get any other job, but
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that is not the case. the majority of volunteers are high school graduates or have vocational job training, but there are still too few volunteers. >> out of my friends, i am the only one. a lot of them gave me funny looks when i said i was joining. others said they would not be able to take being ordered around, be insubordinate. unfortunately, you do have to deal with that stuff, but for me it is not a problem. i think it is good. >> his top commander think some things are not good. the defense minister has spoken more bluntly than his predecessors. >> the organization and structure of the bundesqher -- budneswhern are inadequate. this applies to their abilities, their finances, and
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their leadership structure. >> in other words, the german armed forces are in for a major overhaul. the defense minister is planning on less money and your personnel, but a more flexible and powerful organization. foreign deployments like those in afghanistan will become routine for the bundeswehr. anyone who reports for duty can count on being deployed, not just going through training exercises. whether that is enough is a topic of intense discussion. >> my personal assessment is that there were some battalions and bases that did not optimally prepare soldiers for a mission abroad. >> we have heard so much in the press about how the equipment and training was not up to par for what the soldiers needed. i certainly hope that if they send us on a mission, we have the appropriate training and are
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well prepared. >> there could be snipers lurking here. the radio operator and his comrades are training to cross a dangerous pass. unfortunately, it goes wrong. he is down. past missions demonstrate that such situations are especially dangerous. >> is definitely a broken leg, or were you shot? >> i did not hear anything. it could have been a sniper. >> preparing for the enemy is one thing. international missions bring special challenges. >> soldiers in the field have to be able to fight. of course, they also have to understand the cultures of other countries. they have to be able to mediate. they have to be diplomats. they have to decide which missions are appropriate. >> he is aware of the dangers of combat missions, and is willing
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to go abroad. he is counting on training to do a good job of preparing him for it. >> i think the instructors would give us the knowledge we need to get along with the locals. we have to know exactly what things to look out for, and that it is a different culture we have to deal with. >> basic training has to be reoriented to prepare young volunteers for missions abroad, but experienced instructors are not worried that it will mean radical changes. >> the current -- the training we conducted under the draft will continue no conscription is abolished. we might train more intensively in emergency medical and marksmanship training. but the basic skills, the way they are taught and practiced in current basic training, i think will stay the same. >> there are shortages
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everywhere. the opposition says costs have to be slashed, but do it properly, spending on what the army needs to function successfully abroad, and cutting everything else. >> germany should build up the capabilities that are not up to standard on the international level. helicopters, recall and aircraft, mps, and so on. it would be good to improve in these areas and talk about what we can do without. >> soldiers have to be able to care for themselves. i think you are hungry. >> one visible reform is the drill sergeants are not yelling at recruits. the tone is more civil. after all, they are volunteers who could leave any time they feel the service is not right for them. >> we have this package for
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breakfast. it includes a bit of muesli, raisins, and apples. >> another thing that must change is that the bundeswehr has to attract more volunteers. beginners barely get 800 euros a month. >> the pay is an important part of it. since the job description comes close to that of a policeman or a firefighter. the bundeswehr has to make the necessary adjustments. >> the german armed forces of the future are designed to be efficient, friendly, diplomatic, and effective. the reforms have just begun. >> that is our in-depth, as germany seeks to build up a professional army as part of its wide-ranging military reforms. thanks for joining us, and stay with us if you can.
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